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MS + AT&T = Enterprise Wireless Breakthrough

MS + AT&T = Enterprise Wireless Breakthrough

(August 1, 2002) - In a joint announcement made yesterday, Microsoft Corporation and AT&T Wireless announced plans to cooperate on a number of new wireless data initiatives. The first of these initiatives will see AT&T Wireless beginning to sell Microsoft's Pocket PC Phone Edition Edition before the end of the year. AT&T is also slated to begin selling Microsoft's SmartPhone devices as soon as they are released -- most likely, early in 2003.

Microsoft and AT&T Wireless are also working closely together to ensure that many Microsoft applications will be ready to use "out of the box" whenever those devices are purchased from AT&T Wireless. For example, complicated Internet settings and wireless modem options on the Pocket PC will be pre-configured at the factory to enable instant connection to AT&T's wireless networks. Microsoft and AT&T have also co-developed special synchronization software that will allow customers to more easily access corporate data sources -- such as Microsoft Exchange Servers -- whenever that access occurs via AT&T's wireless networks.

Finally, and perhaps most significantly, AT&T Wireless and Microsoft will be co-operating to make information about mobile devices' current locations accessible via .NET Web Services. This, in combination with MapPoint.NET (Microsoft's existing Web Service for map generation) should enable the creation of a whole new breed of location-sensitive applications. Just a few examples of the limitless possibilities might include:

  • The ability to find out where co-workers, friends, and relatives are at any point in time
  • The ability to generate detailed driving or walking directions -- without even knowing where you are
  • The ability to be notified about local points of interest (tourist attractions or hazards, for example) simply by roaming into their vicinity
  • More Stories By Derek Ferguson

    Derek Ferguson, founding editor and editor-in-chief of .Net Developer's Journal, is a noted technology expert and former Microsoft MVP.

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